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Who is at fault for educational failure-the child or the educational system?

Posted By: Linda Scheer on March 11, 2003
what resonates in this article is that setting educational expectations CAN be a positive approach but ONLY IF the quality of the educational process provided (strategies, resources, adaptations) is in place. High stakes "reform" without systems change puts the responsibility for "achievement" on the child. If the child does not "succeed" on these high stakes tests it is the child who is penalized! The child is retained,fails, drops out. (Society also loses, but many policy makers can't see that far!)

It is not wrong to expect the best from our children. It IS wrong to not provide each child with the best education we can offer. Yet too many school systems are doing just that,especially those "serving" our poorest children. But, lest we forget, school resources are currently related to their community's ability to provide through tax dollars. The problem is usually a combination of district administrators and staff without the vision of quality education for all children and community resources that are insufficient to meet the needs even if the vision is there.

To solve the problem of mediocre education in this country (and that's what it is in too many districts) we must both change the onus of achievement (from the child to the education system) and reform school financing to ensure that all communities have equity in resources to educate their children. Until both issues have been solved, public education in the United States will be generally mediocre and unfair.

Linda Scheer

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 Who is at fault for educational failure-the child or the educational system? by Linda Scheer on March 11, 2003
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